Excerpt from the article:

The student population in America has never been more diverse — but, in many schools, the diversity ends there. According to the National Center for Education Statistics, an estimated 80 percent of public school teachers in America today are white, far eclipsing Hispanic teachers (nine percent) and black teachers (seven percent).

For black students, who make up 16 percent of America’s K-12 student body, this lack of representation can be hugely detrimental — impacting everything from how often they are disciplined to their chances of graduating college.

The Education Trust, a Washington D.C.-based nonprofit that advocates for vulnerable students, has been exploring how the racial diversity of teachers improves black students’ lives. In a new September 25 report provided to Yahoo Lifestyle, the organization shares individual stories of educators — both former and current — who have a unique understanding of the crisis.

The survey is a follow-up to Ed Trust’s major 2016 report titled Through Our Eyes, which uncovered the obstacles black teachers face both in and outside of the classroom. In it, the authors speak with black teachers across seven states who describe a variety of challenges, including connecting with black students, enforcing as opposed to educating, and supporting the whole student. To explore this landscape, Yahoo Lifestyle spoke with both current and former black educators.